Akko Israel is a unique, ancient-modern city in the north of Israel.
You can enjoy the best of old and new in this quaint port city.
Akko has ancient roots and is mentioned in the Bible. But its main claim to fame is having been the Crusader capital of the Holy Land for 100 years when Jerusalem was in Muslim control.
Besides Crusader ruins, there are remnants from the Turkish rule. Wander around the port and see the fisherman plying their trade, Its fun to browse and shop at the local shuk.
And when you get tired, stop and enjoy some of the best Arab cuisine in Israel.
The entrance to the Crusade Capital of Akko is still defended by a huge fortress built by the Hospitaliers Order.
Make sure to visit the fascinating Crusader ruins -
the Crusader walls, the Citadel, the Knights Halls, all remarkably well preserved.
It all looks like the Hospitaliers Knights just left the place and will be back in a minute!
Walking from one huge hall of columns to another, you'll see the knights' sleeping quarters, a dining room for hundreds of warriors, the first European public lavatory, prison cells, and hidden escape tunnels.
Discovered just over twenty years ago, the secret Templars Tunnel running 1,150 feet (350 meters) leads from Akko to the Templar Fortress.
This is the path through which the Templers smuggled out their treasures when Acre was on fire in the 13th century.
In the 19th century, a young Ottoman officer, Ahmed Al-Jazzar called 'the Butcher' besieged Akko and executed its short-lived Bedoin ruler and his young wife.
Today, you can visit the Great Mosque, a fully restored Turkish Bath -
the 'Hamam' and the Turkish Bazaar, all built by the Turkish El-Jazzar, who rebuilt Akko into a major commercial city.
With the help of the British, El-Jazaar was able to destroy Napoleon's undefeatable army!
Over 200 years ago Napoleon's grenadiers found themselves in a deadly trap in the mound between the walls. This is how Napoleon’ dream to become an Emperor of the World from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem ended in bloodshed between Akko's walls.
After shopping in the market, enjoy great hummus or go to the Akko Port and enjoy freshly caught fish from one of the many fish and seafood restaurants.
Here's a plate of delicous hummus drizzled generously with olive oil that we enjoyed at Abu Said in Akko -
Served with fresh parsley, 'harif' or spicy sauce, pickles, olives, tomotoes and onions and of course, freshly baked pita bread.
Akko, once home to Christianity's most important port 800 years ago is a cozy fishing and port city which we consider one of Israel's Top Ten Attractions not to be missed!
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